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Evaluation of Acute Human Airway Toxicity of Standard and Washed Cotton Dusts.

Castellan RM
NIOSH 1986 Oct:41-52
A series of studies was conducted using human volunteers to quantify the potency of various cotton dusts. The methods of dust generation and control, selection of human subjects, and measurement of the airway responses to inhaled cotton dust used in these studies were described. The overall dose response regression analyses indicated that exposure to washed cotton at doses of up to 1mg/m3 resulted in a 1 second forced expiratory volume dose/response relationship with no significant slope, whereas the dose response relationship for unwashed cotton dust had a highly significant slope. Other studies produced a cotton dust with a markedly reduced airway potency essentially equivalent to that washed on the rayon rinse system. Findings suggested that the acute airway potency of dust from washed cotton did not significantly increase during storage. From the findings of all the studies it is suggested that cotton that has been effectively washed in terms of residual endotoxin could be justifiably exempted from the current gravimetric dust permissible exposure limit.
NIOSH-Author; Airborne-dusts; Cotton-dust; Plant-dusts; Bacterial-dusts; Respiratory-system-disorders; Toxic-effects; Inhalation-studies; Pulmonary-function-tests;
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings;
Wakelyn PJ; Jacobs RR; Kirk IW;
Fiscal Year
Priority Area
Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease; Disease and Injury; Respiratory-system-disorders;
Source Name
Washed Cotton: Washing Techniques, Processing Characteristics, and Health Effects
Page last reviewed: February 25, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division